A Voice in the
August 1, 2000
Q/A Topic: David's "Worship Bands"?
Recently we have observed on a couple of occasions David's attempts at bringing the Ark to Jerusalem, and the music associated with each. The first time they used an ox cart and worship band, and the second time, the Levites 'carried' the Ark, and they had the "sound of the ram's horn". (2Sam6) In the August article on "Worship" the statement went so far as to suggest that David "deleted" the "worship band" second time 'round.
Naturally, there were some objections from the camps of those whose hearts did not want to see what God was teaching, citing the 'instruments' listed in Psalm 150, as well as David's "worship band" (as they would taunt) listed in 1Chr15 where it tells of his successful bringing of the Ark to Jerusalem, as it lists many instruments; and they deny that there was a "ram's horn".
It is time to have some understanding regarding some of the differences between what David set up for worship in Israel, and modern "worship/praise bands"; and to silence the cackling demons.
Notice David's commentary regarding the two incidents: "For because you did not do it at the first, Jehovah our God made a break [Uzzah died] on us, since we did not seek Him in due order." (1Chr15:13) If one looks at 1Chr ch15, one sees "orderliness" in everything. "..in due order.."
Let us keep in mind that modern "worship bands" are an integral part of "charismania". They came out of it, and they help perpetuate it. In correcting the paganly originated (1Cor12:2) charismania of Paul's day, he exhorted that all things should be done "decently and in order". (1Cor14:40)
So, let's take a look at this 'orchestra' David assembled. The primary thing was -singing-. "..lifting up the voice with joy.." (vs16) "..the singers.." (vs19) "And Chenaniah, chief of the Levites, was for song. He instructed about the song..." (vs22)
Please remember back to the series "God is: -my song" where we discussed music and singing with "-MELODY- in your heart to the Lord" (Eph5:19)
Now, notice that the "harps" were "set to Alamoth". (vs20) What is "Alamoth"? Music today doesn't have anything called "Alamoth", and there doesn't seem to be any documentation that would tell us. But the wording is quite clear, that this was a type of "tuning" of the harps. Having "keys" as we do today is a rather historically 'recent' thing. Western music today has basically two kinds of harmony, major and minor. But this kind of sound actually evolved out of Medieval times, where they had 'eight' "Church Modes". Music was "melodic", and these "modes" were different kinds of octave 'scales'. Our 'major' diatonic scale comes from what then was the "Hypolydian mode". The 'minor', most closely resembles the "Hypodorian mode". Even, our ability to play any song in any 'key' is a relatively 'recent' concept. It was J.S.Bach who introduced the "equal temperament". To explain briefly... if an instrument is tuned perfectly, where the 5ths, 4ths, 3rds, etc don't have any 'beats', that instrument will sound good only in whatever key those intervals were tuned to, and its relative minor. Any other key will sound "out of tune". This is because of the physics of sound. ['Not going to explain -that- here.] Many of the old tracker organs in Europe, if they are still tuned as they were originally, are typically ideal only in the keys of Eb or Bb (if I remember correctly). What Bach devised actually tunes the intervals ever-so-slightly "off pitch". One reason that tuning a piano is such an "art". The reason the tuner sits there listening so intently is to "count the beats" as to how he is tuning it "off", and to differentiate between the beats he's supposed to be tuning with, and the "false beats" because it's a cheap spinet or whatever other reason.
But before Bach, there were more "modes". And even today, in various non-western classical cultures, the music is unique to our 'western' ears, because it often sounds like many of the notes are "off-pitch". But actually, those are the "modes" of the music of their culture.
If a person goes back in history, we don't have recordings. But we know the thoughts about music. The ancient Greeks and Romans readily understood the relationship between the kinds of music and the emotions. In fact, according to "A History of Western Music" by Grout, "Greek mythology ascribed to music a divine origin and named as its inventors and earliest practitioners gods and demigods, such as Apollo, Amphion, and Orpheus. In this dim prehistoric world, music had magic powers.." Music could heal people. Other kinds of music could stir up passions. Music could stir up good and bad thoughts. To summarize in a nutshell, the Greeks understood that music could, and did, -make- society into whatever the music was that they listened to. In fact, Plato said, "Let me make the songs of a nation and I care not who makes its laws."
In other words, there are some kinds of music that will appeal to the 'baser' instincts of humanity. And at the other end, there are kinds that help lead a person into pleasing worship of God. A big part of the "effects" of music upon a person are these "modes". We all readily understand how "Major" is associated with "happy", and "minor" with "sad/somber". Well, rather than evolving, music has obviously devolved, because we have only "two" basic modes our music works on. In Medieval times, we have already observed that there were "eight" "Church modes". And during that time, what might there have been in the non-church (catholic) music? So, go back even further, how many different kinds of modes might there have been?
So, as David is 'this time' setting things up "in due order", the harps are tuned to "Alamoth", whatever that may have been. "..with lyres on the octave". (vs21) Since he is obviously doing things differently than he had done the first time, it is quite likely that they were using something different then, too, for the modal tuning.
So, what is the -difference- between harps, accoustic guitar, violins, piano (all 'stringed' instruments), and electric guitars with distorted 'wailing' overdrive? If you weren't around then, please go read the aforementioned "God is: -my song". It explains more theory of "sound". The 'purity' of sound, versus "distortion", which characterizes guitars in worship/rock bands. Remember, this whole current thing started with the Portion, "Purity in Service".
There is a -difference- between high-hat cymbals accompanying sensuousness, and crash of orchestral cymbals in a musical crescendo.
There is a -difference- between kick drum accentuating lustful base heart throbs, and orchestral bass drum that rumbles everything in sight.
There is a -difference- between jumping, whirling, and lustful provocative slithering. Several years ago the expose of Chuck Missler [in the 'Discernment Archives'] speaking at a local church included the 'band' he had brought along. After they had been going awhile, their final number, just prior to him speaking, was a down-n-dirty 'dirty-dancing' type number where the female in the group began sensuously girating passionately. All that was missing from what she was doing was a "dancing pole".
Modern "worship bands" employ the throbs and beats of sensuality as the groups seek to be "spirit-filled" and 'worshipers' wiggle their bodies in similar fashion to what is done on the dance floor with similar music for the world's "mating rituals". After all, the predominant feature of the worship of the heathen around Israel, whom they were judged for "whoring after" (Lev20:5, Judg2:17, Eze20:30), was "fertility rites".
Years ago it was told of a missionary family that returned to the jungle after having been on furlough. During furlough their children picked up records/tapes of rock-n-roll. As they were playing these tapes, the 'heathen' of the jungle came and asked the missionaries 'why' they were 'calling up the spirits'? And the missionaries asked, 'how is that?' With those sounds. Those 'sounds' call up the spirits.
2+2=4 time here...
Worship bands and worship music is a variant of rock-n-roll. Rather than being "melodically" oriented, it is "rhythmically" based... appealing to the baser "flesh". [Again: please read "God is: -my song"] Remember that "the flesh lusts -against- the [Holy] Spirit..." (Gal5:17) When the 'emotions' are filled with such heathen rhythms and occult-like mantras, that is of the "flesh". That which is of the flesh and sensual is also "demonic". (Jas3:15) Worship bands are calling up demons. Such worship is worship of demons. Such 'filling' is demon-possession. Teachings on such things are "doctrines of demons". (1Tm4:1)
For further reading of past studies on these topics, please visit the TopicsSearch at the website. In the 'left' box scroll down to "music". Otherwise, other than 'sincere' questions/comments, I will not "dialogue" with any who would seek to do so.
Today's phenomenon called "worship/praise bands" has -absolutely- NO RESEMLBANCE to what is recorded in the Psalms!